The radio system used by most Calhoun County law enforcement and emergency agencies was offline for about 30 minutes this morning, leaving dispatchers unable to contact officers in the field.
The system is now working again, according to Shay Cook, public information officer for the Calhoun County Emergency Management Agency.
County EMA Director Dan Long said a power problem caused the county’s 800 megahertz radio system to go off-line this morning. The system, which allows most agencies in the region to communicate with each other, was in-stalled in the run-up to destruction of chemical weapons at the Anniston Army Depot. Federal money from the Chemical Stockpile Emergency Preparedness Program paid for the installation and for a series of upgrades.
During the outage, tone alert radios designed to alert residents of accidents at the chemical weapons incinerator also were not working, Cook said.
The tone alert radios and radios used by emergency responders now are operating again, Cook said.
An employee at McCord Communications, which holds the contract for the system, said the outage began around 8 a.m. Another McCord employee referred further questions to the EMA.
Matt Wade, chief deputy for the Calhoun County Sheriff’s Office, said during the outage that dispatchers could not call officers over the system, but that the county still keeps and maintains its old radio system as a backup.